Mowed the lawn. Shivered during the first part of it. This is May in Alabama. So glad we licked that global warming thing.
Or maybe they were right in the 1970s and global cooling is upon us. Nah, probably not. Complex, multiple ecosystems moving with and against each other and al that. But it was another day of supposed rain that proved to be clouds that stayed a while, whispered on us and then never had the decency to melt away like a bad rumor would. When I started mowing the lawn I thought I would be rained out.
So I had a few minutes late in the evening to ride my bicycle. This is a silly thing, but I have new water bottles — because the old ones are a bit small and have a weird top I don’t like and they now have 3,200 miles on them — and I wanted to try these out. They are simple, basic, straightforward and inexpensive plastic that holds a lot of water. This, I thought, would be a good thing in the summer. If the season ever considers approaching.
The high today was a pleasant 63, with overcast skies throughout.
So I hopped on the bike, swung the headset through the sidewalk and down the short driveway and into the road. I had about three pedal strokes in and, you won’t believe this, I noticed the water bottles made the bike heavier.
I ride an aluminum bike with a carbon fork. Altogether it weighs somewhere around 18-20 pounds, probably. I’m not a $6,000, 14-grams of carbon guy. But I notice things. When I switched from Continental racing tires to kevlar training tires I noticed a drop off in my incredibly limited performance. When I put a Gatorskin on the back wheel when I was finally able to return to the bike at the beginning of the year I noticed there was a bit less resistance and, hence, more speed.
I notice things like this on my bike. It is a simple perception. (And my bike’s geometry isn’t even dialed in.) The Yankee says it is like the Princess and the Pea.
So I ride up to the next town. My shoulder hurts. My shoulder gets better. My water bottles are full and heavy. Not bad, heavy, but noticeable. They’re there. I ride back down through the rural backroads to get close to home. And there I got a runner’s stitch, which slowed me down a bit. That went away. So I pedaled on through our local time trial area and saw the sun for the first time today, just as it was retiring for the evening. Back past the state park I went, having a grand ol’ time and showing one on the computer, too. Raced up College, to the art museum, turned and headed home.
I was out for just under an hour. I went through two residential areas, a golf course, the big shopping district, past two country cemeteries, more suburbs, a state park, another commercial strip, an art museum and a city park. In all of that time I was never more than five linear miles from home. What a great town.
Also, my water bottles are heavier. That must account for my little boost in speed: more mass moving downhill.
Things to read: 14 tips for journalists on Facebook. Number six is share breaking news. Number seven is keep followers updated. Nevertheless, this list might still be useful to someone.
Trend watch: Digital marketing services:
When in doubt, do it all
In 2008, The Dallas Morning News began to experience what publisher and chief executive officer Jim Moroney called “a significant decline in print ad revenue for the second consecutive year.”
The paper approached the problem by diversifying from several angles. It “aggressively” sought more commercial printing and distribution, and now prints The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Investor’s Business Daily, along with USA Today, formerly its sole commercial printing client.
The Morning News also created CrowdSource, an event marketing division, as an addition to its portfolio. The purpose was to generate incremental revenue while engaging consumers with the brand. Last year, for example, CrowdSource created an event called Walk In The Park to bring residents out to a new downtown park in which the paper sponsors a reading and games room. Currently, CrowdSource is working with other organizations on a 50th anniversary commemoration of the JFK assassination in Dallas.
Another new part of the company is 508 Digital. This business — named for the address of the newspaper’s building — operates like an agency, offering digital, social media, and search engine optimization services for small- and medium-sized businesses. Speakeasy is another marketing and promotions division that provides social media strategy and execution for local businesses that offers “content marketing delivered via smart social media.”
Finally, the Dallas Morning News started two magazines, Texas Wedding Guide and Design Guide, as yet another way to expand the brand and increase revenue.
Based on results thus far, Moroney said, “We will continue to pursue a strategy that builds new sources of revenue off the foundation of our brand, our core competencies, and our infrastructure.”
That one is worth the long excerpt and worth the read.
New York Times launches web-only documentaries with Retro Report:
The New York Times is launching a series of short, web-only documentaries with Retro Report, a nonprofit news organization that aims to investigate “the most perplexing news stories of our past with the goal of encouraging the public to think more critically about current events and the media.”
The videos will air each Monday at the NYT’s baby boomer blog, “Booming,” and on Retro Report’s website. Each will be 10 to 15 minutes long and accompanied by a story by NYT reporter Michael Winerip. The first one, “The Voyage of the Mobro 4000,” looks at the garbage barge of 1987.
This one has a small Alabama hook. And is moderately interesting. But 12 minutes is a lot to ask of online audiences with only mildly interesting. Judge for yourself:
Fascinating video interview here. AP’s global video news chief: Sorting out contributors vs. activists in Syria:
With little access to the raging civil war in Syria, the Associated Press has been relying on a citizen journalists with smart phones with the Bambuser app to stream live coverage of the conflict, explains Sandy MacIntrye …
Not necessarily just observers, he notes that many of the contributors are activists and he explains how they and their associations are clearly identified and authenticated.
TV is the next model to be disrupted. It’ll persist, but they’re going to be hurt badly. You can already see it in YouTube’s numbers, in the ratings, in the financials and second-screen habits. If you are in television, or invested in TV marketing, and not already thinking down this path you should probably pick up your pace. This might help. 10 reasons to combine your TV And web video ad campaigns:
TV still makes up the vast majority of advertising media budgets, by far. But it’s no secret that today’s TV audience is also watching their favorite shows online. If you’re a marketer, you know that this is an important shift in viewer behavior that could impact the effectiveness of your TV campaigns. But you don’t know how it impacts your TV efforts or what you can do about it. There’s one way to find out: Manage and measure TV and online video together. When you do this, numerous new synergies and opportunities will arise along with the answers.
A reporter at the Toronto Star erred, significantly, and the newspaper is fixing the problem. Talk about a paper getting it right. Toronto Star will hold training sessions for reporters following front-page apology:
Star investigations editor Kevin Donovan will lead mandatory training sessions for reporters following an embarrassing incident last week, Star Public Editor Kathy English writes. The Star published a story accusing provincial parliament member Margarett Best of vacationing in Mexico while she was on medical leave; reporter Richard Brennan misunderstood a tag on a photo on Best’s Facebook page, English writes, and didn’t tell her that was the subject of his story when he tried to get comment.
Now all the reporters are getting a brush-up.
Finally, it pays to stick with a story. This one has been going on for three years.
“Another thing with neurological progression is that it’s five steps forward and three steps back,” she said. “It’s peaks and valleys. It’s not continual.”
After everything he’s been through, Kevin said he will keep trying to get back to being normal again.
“I’ve just been working so hard…and I’m getting better,” Kevin said.
Read that, meet one tough eight-year-old.